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Springfield Museum of Art becomes Smithsonian affiliate

SPRINGFIELD - The Springfield Museum of Art has been selected as the only Smithsonian Affiliate art museum in the state of Ohio. The museum's affiliate status will allow it to borrow objects from Washington, D.C. to share with local art patrons.
The Smithsonian's affiliate program was started 16 years ago and allows accepted member museums to borrow objects from its vast collection, which includes over 136 million pieces. Affiliates pay $2,500 per year for the right to request objects and speakers.
There are currently 170 Smithsonian affiliate museums around the country.  Springfield Museun of Art Executive Director Ann Fortescue says
being part of the program is a huge boost for local art lovers.
"We are honored as well as delighted to bring the Smithsonian to our neighborhood," Fortescue said. "So, we hope that folks from throughout the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio will come and enjoy our Springfield Museum of art collections but also those amazing treasures that we bring to the midwest from the Mall in Washington, D.C."
Fortescue says the affiliate program also offers a very coveted opportunity for college students in the area to learn at the Smithsonian as well as the Springfield Art Museum through an internship.
"One of the other benefits of becoming an affiliate is that it provides us with the ability to offer or to recommend interns and these are college
and university level interns both undergraduate and graduate students to the Smithsonian Internship Program," She said. "The way it works is that intern spends a period of time at the Smithsonian and then would spend a period of time at the Springfield Museum of Art. It is based on the project that we would be working on. It is an incredible opportunity."
Fortescue says the museum has already requested its first object. A piece by nationally known Ohio sculptor and ceramacist Jack Earl, for a retrospective on his work to open in September.